Tuesday, July 31, 2012

DIY - Mason Jar Soap Dispenser


Check out this great DIY project from Heather Bullard @ HeatherBullard.com It's a way to reuse the classic mason jar and make a unique soap dispenser. It's definitely on my to-do list now! Check out her site for the instructions!

How to make your own Mason jar soap dispenser. - Thanks Heather!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Nine Healthiest Alcoholic Drinks - Gizmodo

Image via Gizmodo.com

I came across this article while surfing the net. Thought I would share since we are all (or all should be) health conscious. Article via Gizmodo 

The Nine Healthiest Alcoholic Drinks

It's summer time. You want to look good. You want to feel good—especially after that hangover from the time you tried to drink all day without passing out. So how are you supposed to relax with an adult beverage on the beach, porch, or patio? By choosing one of the nine healthiest drinks you can pour up.
It's Friday afternoon, you've made it through the long week, and it's time for Happy Hour, Gizmodo's weekly booze column. A cocktail shaker full of innovation, science, and alcohol. Here's to your health.
In the quest for healthy booziness, we talked to Ms. Maren Robinson, certified nutritional consultant (CNC) and master of public health (MPH). As a holistic nutritionist, she doesn't just count calories—she looks at a cocktail's comprehensive health profile. These drinks are on this list based on their nutrient value, caloric density, potential for obtaining fruit and vegetable servings, sugar content, antioxidant level, and medicinal properties. Plus flavor.

The Warning

"Healthy" is a pretty subjective term. Nothing on this list is healthy when multiplied by four. According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, drinking in moderation is defined as having "up to 1 drink per day for women and up to 2 drinks per day for men." Our bodies treat alcohol as a toxin. No matter what form it takes, your body can only process so much, so quickly. Robinson notes, "Although these drinks may be healthier options, it does not mean you should consume more. The fewer the drinks, the fewer the calories, and reduced risk of longer term problems. Further, if you are an alcoholic, seek the appropriate treatment options, and avoid drinking alcohol." Further, "healthy" is a subjective term. Some people are looking to keep calories down, some are looking to get vitamins and nutrients. Here are the Gizmodo picks!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Insanity Workout Survival Guide (Updated 8/21/12)


The insanity workout is just that... Insane. (Bad pun, I know!) When I get asked about my Insanity experience it's hard to express the mixed emotions that you have. It's a true love hate relationship. You love the result, but I hate pressing that play button, because I know whats coming! It's true that this program isn't for everyone. I know of several people who can't make it through the first week. Some of them it's just not right for them, but some of them could do it if they had a little motivation and a few tips to void the immanent discouragement that this workout can bring. For them and for those who might be looking into the Insanity workout, I wanted to issue my "Insanity Workout Survival Guide". A list of tips to get you through Insanity and to your goal. (Too, click here to check out my Insanity journey that help me build this list...)


  1. Drink Water... LOTS of the stuff. You will need to rehydrate, because you will be sweating out of places you didn't know could sweat. 
  2. Sip on your water. Especially with the workout. Don't guzzle it. If you do, you can anticipate cleaning puke up or at least you will have that uncomfortable sloshing in your belly as you workout.
  3. You're calfs WILL be sore for the first week or so... As will some of your other muscles. But muscle soreness is good. It might tai you a little while to get out of bed or in and out of a seat but it will go away. Muscle soreness is NOT a reason to quit. 
  4. Stretch, stretch, stretch... Although there are two little stretch sessions in the workouts, I highly recommend doing at least two minutes of independent stretches before you press the play button. I strongly suggest you focus on your calfs, hamstrings, and quads. It doesn't hurt to sneak a few extra stretches in during the day too.
  5. Pace yourself! One of the most important tips that I can't stress enough...It's a 45 - 60 minute workout. Don't go "all out" during the warm up. It's just that, a warm up. Yeah, it too will kick your butt and get you sweating... but you have to be able to get to the rest of the exercises. The circuits typically come in three. The first round is a slow, second round is moderate pace, third is do what you can do! As much and as fast as you can while keeping GOOD FORM!
  6. Don't compromise your form!  You can and will hurt yourself if you keep pushing yourself. Specifically if you push and your exercise technique isn't spot on. Listen and watch how the exercise is supposed to be performed. If you notice you don't look what it should or you hurt...STOP!!! Take a break, then try again. 
  7. "Take 5"! Well maybe not 5 minutes, but enough time for you're heart rate to slow down, so you can catch your breath, and to let your muscles get some fresh blood and oxygen to them. Get some cold water while your at it. Even the fitness gurus and Shuan T takes a break durning the intense workout(s).  Overall...Listen to your body, it knows what it can and can't do.
  8. "No pain, no gain!" NO! This could not be anymore false. If you experience pain of any kind, STOP! Pushing through will only make it worse. Pain is there for a reason, it's a built in alert to stop whatever your doing because you're about to cause harm to yourself. See a medical professional if needed.
  9. The "It hurts" Modification! If you hurt or notice there is a specific exercise that bothers you or a joint (like your knees) Change it out for something else. "Power Knees" not for you? Trade in Mini Jumps or lunges. Key is to keep your form no matter what. 
  10. The "I can't do it" Modification. Not everyone can do a push up, modify it. Do a high plank instead. Same for other exercises. If you can't do what they he is asking, do something you can safely do to build your way up to the next level. 
  11. Schedule it! A large part of the battle of getting through this is with finding time to do it in your busy schedule. Get up an hour early or plan to do it before dinner... either way. If you don't have a solid schedule to do it... it won't get done.
  12. Don't eat... A big meal or crappy meal at least 2-3 hours before you workout. If you do, you will pay for it. Either puking, fighting the urge to puke, or overall sluggish from what you're body is working on in your stomach.
  13. Diet Plan... I couldn't stick to the issued diet plan because it's expensive for me. If you can stick with the plan great! If not,  I suggest still watching what you eat. You will get hungary because the workout uses up a lot of the fuel your body has stored. You will need to refuel for your recovery and for the next workout. Moderation and tracking is key. I use FatSecret.com to track my weight, calorie intake and calorie burning. I recommend them or one you find to track what you eat.
  14. WTF...Week 5 & Week 7! Both weeks include the Fit Test and the Max Interval Circuit. Problem is... with the Fit Test, you go all out. You are suppose to max out to see how/if you have improved. My problem with this is, your too spent to do the Max Interval Circuit. This then compromises your form and you're pretty much worthless for the workout. If you do vise-versa, you are pretty much guaranteed to have worse Fit Test numbers because the workout will fatigue you. My suggestion  is to preform the Fit Test on your "Day Off". Then the following day, Do your Max Interval Circuit. (or vise-versa).
  15. Knee pain. I find this to be the most common complaint with this routine. It all falls back to keeping your form/technique and or modifying if you know something hurts your knees or what ever else. This is a high level program so your joints and muscle are most likely not yet "use to" the new demand or stress placed on your joints. *I took 2 Aleve and put ice on my knees 2 -3 times a day until the pain was better controlled and practically gone around week 5. 
  16. Dig Deeper!  Life happens! Don't get discouraged if you miss a workout or if you're not seeing the results you want. Stick with it. Take a day, two, or more off if you need. It's not the end of the world. It will be there when you're ready. All you have to do is press play! 
  17. Weight Loss. Everyone and every body is different. It took me almost 6 weeks to see any change. I've lost ~12 lbs thus far.  Some will show faster, some later. Either way, you will see a result if you stick with it. 


Any questions, comments, tips, and suggestions are welcome! I will be adding to this list as I make my way through round two and my wife makes her way though round one after having our daughter Millie! Hope this helps some of you, and again, feel free to ask a question if you have one. Leave it in the comment section or via Twitter @Batteman87 Thanks for looking!

*"I took 2 Aleve and iced my knees"... This is what I did, this is not to be taken as medical advice for what you should do. Nor should this post. I recommend consulting with your physician before, during, and after your Insanity Workout journey if you have or think you have any issues. Basically, I'm not responsible for what you do...  



Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy Declaration of Independence Day!

Lazy River - RiverStone Resort & Spa (Pigeon Forge, TN)
Thanks to those who fight and have fought for our freedom(s)!

"The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more." - John Adams in a letter to his wife Abigail 


A great day to celebrate both our Independence Day (July 2nd*) and the Declaration of Independence (July 4th*). I hope you all have a great one! Now, go sped time with your family and/or pets! 


*During the American Revolution, the legal separation of the Thirteen Colonies from Great Britain occurred on July 2, 1776, when the Second Continental Congress voted to approve a resolution of independence that had been proposed in June by Richard Henry Lee of Virginia declaring the United States independent from Great Britain.[4][5] After voting for independence, Congress turned its attention to the Declaration of Independence, a statement explaining this decision, which had been prepared by a Committee of Five, with Thomas Jefferson as its principal author. Congress debated and revised the wording of the Declaration, finally approving it on July 4. A day earlier, John Adams had written to his wife Abigail. (Wikipedia)

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